Child Custody and Visitation Lawyer in Huntsville, AL Does What Is Best for You and Your Family
A firm that protects your child’s future
Maintaining stability and a sense of normalcy are integral parts of helping a child make a successful transition following a divorce. At Sree B. Ravi, P.C., Attorney at Law, our practice is focused on our clients’ needs, and we devote our time to working with you to develop a suitable plan for your family. We help you at all stages of the process to create, enforce and modify custody and visitation schedules based on what your child needs.
How does the court determine child custody and visitation rights?
The court always considers the best interests of a child above anything else. In Alabama, the law favors continuing contact with both parents and shared responsibilities for raising the child after a divorce. The court grants the type of custody that it determines will most benefit the child and considers each parent’s mental and emotional state and their geographic locations. Historically, courts favored granting custody to mothers. However, courts now consider only what is in the best interests of the children, not the gender of the custodial parent. Factors that the court considers in determining custody arrangements are:
Visitation rights are also considered based on the best interests of children. Even if parents agree to no visitation outside of court or a child refuses to spend time with a parent, the court can still mandate a visitation schedule. It is illegal for one parent to prevent the other from spending time with a child after the court has implemented a mandatory visitation schedule. A parent who interferes with court-ordered visitation may face penalties, including fines and contempt charges. You can petition the court to enforce custody and visitation agreements if your former spouse is not complying with court orders. A reputable family lawyer can explain your rights as a parent and ensure that you are getting as much time with your children as possible.
What types of custody arrangements exist in Alabama?
Custody arrangements are tailored to children’s best interests and usually require each parent to share in the rights and responsibilities associated with raising children. Custody agreements are classified according to the following categories:
- Joint legal custody — Each parent has equal responsibility for making significant decisions regarding a child’s healthcare and education.
- Joint physical custody — Each parent has a right to maintain regular contact with the child and to contribute to the living situation of the child.
- Sole legal custody — One parent has exclusive rights to make any decisions about the child, including those related to the child’s health, well-being and education.
- Sole physical custody — One parent has exclusive rights to live with the child, and the other parent is granted only visitation rights.
Can I change an existing custody or visitation arrangement?
If one parent experiences a significant change in circumstances that prevents complying with the court’s custody, visitation or child support order, that parent may petition the court for a modification. The court considers what is in the best interests of the child and determines if such a modification is necessary. Modifications can be considered in situations involving a parent’s relocation, remarriage or cohabitation and the child’s own wishes if age appropriate.
Let us help your Northern Alabama family
At Sree B. Ravi, P.C., Attorney at Law, our primary goal is to help Huntsville families through their most difficult challenges. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case. Call us at 256-937-1540 or contact us online.